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Report - Chatterley Whitfield Colliery, Stoke - January 2012

Discussion in 'Industrial Sites' started by tweek, Jan 17, 2012.

  1. tweek

    tweek Huddersfield Tourist Information Board
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    Chatterley Whitfield Colliery, Stoke - January 2012

    Visited with NickUK, fishbrain and Hiddenshadow

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    Fishbrain and I found ourselves back in Stoke. Having hopped over some spikey stuff, we met up with Hiddenshadow and NickUK and attempted to 'complete' that which we had missed on previous visits.

    We did pretty well, mooched around and had some laughs, but the day came to a rather abrupt end just as we were finishing off our final targets. Still, it did mean that we met two lovely gentlemen along with their supporting cast of Ford Focus Mk.II's with yellow and blue fluorescent vehicle livery and flashing lights.

    History and Pics

    Chatterley Whitfield Colliery is a disused coal-mine on the outskirts of Chell in Stoke-on-Trent. It was the largest in North Staffordshire, and was the first colliery to produce 1,000,000 tons of saleable coal in a year.

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    With the advent of cheap oil supplies from abroad in the late 1950s, contraction in the coalmining industry began to take place. The collieries most affected by this were the older ones where the best coal had been worked out and at which it was dificult to mine coal economically. Chatterley Whitfield was one of the victims of this period, output declining from over one million tons per year in 1937 to 408,000 tons in 1965.

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    In 1974 it was decided that Chatterley Whitfield coal could be more easily worked from Wolstanton Colliery and an underground roadway was driven to join the two pits. In 1976, coal drawing at Chatterley Whitfield came to an end.

    Two years later, a Trust was formed to establish the Chatterley Whitfield Mining Museum. The site was then declared a local nature reserve in 1991.

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    Whitfield extends a long way underground in all directions. It even joins up with the underground passages of Wolstanton colliery. The underground shafts at Whitfield are flooded, the buildings are all that remain to be seen.

    The only reason the surface buildings remain at Whitfield is that after the colliery shut down in 1976, the site operated as a mining museum, housing for a while the National Coalmining Collection. The museum closed in August 1991 because of drainage problems, but soon afterwards, English Heritage declared it a Scheduled Ancient Monument to protect it from demolition.


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    "Do you catch many photographers here?"

    "I caught one here last week."


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    Thanks for viewing,
    tweek

    :Not Worthy
     
    #1 tweek, Jan 17, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2012
    Mr Sam likes this.

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